ABP Animal Welfare Policy.
This Animal Welfare Policy relates to all the ABP UK sites and its employees during the processing of both cattle & sheep. Read our policy below.
Animal Welfare Teams
ABP UK employees endeavour to maintain high standards of animal welfare throughout its entire operation.
“Animal Welfare is Everyone’s Responsibility.”
Our Primary Technical Director and Group Animal Welfare Manager are both Royal Veterinary College registered veterinary surgeons.
The Group Animal Welfare Manager focuses on animal welfare in regular factory audits.
Each ABP UK site has a designated Animal Welfare Officer holding the required Certificates of Competence (CoC) to ensure compliance with regulation, safeguarding the welfare of animals in our care.
All designated AWOs attend the external AW training (the Bristol University AWO course or LivestockWise training).
Any incident compromising animal welfare will be reported to AWO, investigated and corrective action taken.
The Animal Welfare Officer will be contactable during and outside of operational hours.
Every operative working with live animals on our sites holds a CoC for their task, as required under the animal welfare legislation and are trained against the site’s Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).
Livestock will be treated and handled in a way to avoid unnecessary pain, distress or suffering at all times, in accordance with current legislation and Guide to Good Practice.
Our mission is to handle all stock as quietly and calmly as possible, demonstrating knowledge and understanding of basic behavioral patterns, to minimize stress experienced by the animals. Respect will always be show to animals.
The electric goads will only be used in exceptional circumstances and in line with the ‘ABP Goad Use Policy.’
ABP UK will ensure that all animals in our care are handled and given the right facilities to provide:
- Freedom from hunger and thirst
- Freedom from discomfort
- Freedom from pain, injury and disease
- Freedom to express normal behavior
- Freedom from fear and distress
The Animal Welfare Manual as set out by ABP UK can be found on every site and will be reviewed and updated at least annually.
All staff involved in the handling of animals throughout the slaughter process will be familiar with the policy and any amendment will be made available immediately.
Stunning Equipment and Lairage Facilities
All equipment for stunning/killing will be regularly inspected, maintained and cleaned to ensure effective and safe operation according to manufacturer’s instructions.
All facilities for housing and handling animals will be regularly inspected, maintained and cleaned to ensure good animal welfare levels are achieved and maintained.
Animals will be unloaded as quickly as possible after arrival and subsequently slaughtered without undue delay.
Animal welfare status will be assessed upon arrival in order to identify unfit / injured animals and priority will be given for processing. Where an animal is unable to walk on arrival it will be slaughtered where it is lying.
Every animal will be slaughtered humanely, they will be effectively stunned prior to slaughter to render them instantly unconscious and insensible to pain until death supervenes.
CCTV cameras are installed in all live animal areas of our sites.
Historic and live footage is monitored weekly on-site by a competent person.
The Group Animal Welfare Manager has remote access and use of the CCTV for auditing and verification of practices.
In addition, Official Veterinarians also use our CCTV system for random monitoring of animal welfare practices.
Chief Executive Officer
ABP UK is part of the Food Industry Initiative on Antimicrobials (FIIA) which has the stated vision of ‘Retailers, manufacturers, processors and food service companies coming together to promote and support responsible antibiotic use and action on antimicrobial resistance’. The intention of this initiative is to support and engage with existing industry groups working in this area, ensuring work is aligned and duplication of effort avoided. FIIA has published three policies covering: Responsible Use of Antibiotics, Measurement of Antibiotic Data, and a Code of Conduct on Access to and Use of Industry Data. ABP UK fully supports and subscribes to these policies as part of its approach to antibiotic stewardship.
The policies and further information about FIIA can be found at www.fiia.co.uk